Illinois personal trainer invents devices to help disabled people work out

A Batavia man is taking personal training to a completely new level. He has invented several devices to keep his disabled clients on the move.

Now, his goal is to make those devices accessible for everyone.

Ashley Eisenmenger is blind, but she can hear how well she's running by using a device called the Tru-Guide. It beeps when she's veering off course.

"As someone who can't see, maintaining a forward straight line is really challenging because you don't have the horizon to focus on," she said. "And this allows me to workout at the level I need to."

The patent-pending idea started in the Batavia garage of her personal trainer, Shawn True.

"I bought a skateboard, tore it apart, put these on, put the bands on, so you can slide back and forth," Shawn said as he showed FOX 32 another invention — the Truslide.

For the majority of his career, Shawn has worked with clients who have a range of disabilities.

"I had done 18 marathons, two Iron Men Triathlons, lots of other triathlons," said Mark Stephen.

After a cycling accident, Mark was told he would never be able to walk again.

"Shawn, I call his clients, we're the land of the misfit toys, but Shawn finds a path to keep us improving," Mark said.

With a cross-country cycling trip, Mark proved everyone wrong.

His training with Shawn on the Truslide at Lateral Fitness in Chicago made it possible.

"We're always testing, challenging, pushing, and because, A: there are no boundaries and B: there is no rulebook," Mark said.


In all, Shawn has created three devices that can be used in different ways to adapt to each client's needs. His goal is making each device affordable so that fitness is in reach for everyone.

"To see those little things, even if they're teeny, teeny advancements, it's awesome to see people trying and so my clients inspire me to work harder to get this stuff out," Shawn said.

You can reach out to Shawn by going to his website, He is currently working with a Chicago inventors group to get his devices manufactured and on the market.